FORMER West Ham midfielder Dimitri Payet has left Marseille as a free agent.
The 36-year-old broke down in tears as he announced his departure in a press conference in France.
AFPPayet has left Marseille as a free agent[/caption]
TwitterPayet broke down in tears after announcing his departure[/caption]
Speaking about Payet’s departure, Marseille president Pablo Longoria said: “I would like to thank Dimitri for everything he has brought to Olympique de Marseille over all these years.
“Beyond an exceptional talent, I also want to salute his love for the club, for the supporters and for the city. He is a symbol of this strong connection between OM and Marseille.
“I wish him the best for his next stage of life. Dimitri will always be at home here.”
His contract was set to expire in June 2024, but club officials suddenly decided to terminate his agreement one year early.
Just a few weeks ago, the Frenchman revealed that he did not want to leave Marseille this summer.
He said: “I want to leave through the front door and, even at 36, I still have goals that keep me awake. I tell myself that I can’t stop until I win something with the club.”
However, his unexpected departure means he is now a free agent.
Payet joined Marseille in a £25million transfer from West Ham in January 2017.
He scored 78 goals and assisted 95 in 326 appearances for the club during his time at the Stade Velodrome.
Prior to his spell in France, he spent two years at West Ham.
He was a fan favourite in East London until he began refusing to play for the Hammers in a bid to force a move away.
Last year, Payet revealed that he turned down several big clubs, including Manchester United, after leaving West Ham so that he could join Marseille.